Barbara Bowman grew up in Denver, Colorado and began modeling and acting age 13 with JF Images, Denver’s leading modeling and acting agency at that time.
While studying acting, she appeared in print ads and commercials. At age 17, Barbara’s agent, Jo Farrell arranged for her to be mentored and groomed for show business by the legendary Bill Cosby. Following a successful audition with Cosby, Barbara’s agent and Bill Cosby sent her to live in New York City and study acting.
What began as a dream for Barbara in 1985, ended up a nightmare of continual emotional and sexual abuse by Cosby. He manipulated and brainwashed her into trusting him as a father figure, then went on to drug and rape her for the next two years.
It was her screams and pleas for help as Cosby pinned her down to his Las Vegas hotel bed to rape her again, which ended the abuse once and for all. Barbara was thrown out of the hotel, then thrown out of her housing that Cosby had been subsidizing, and flown back to Denver immediately, with just the clothes on her back.
Barbara returned to NYC a few months later determined to pursue her dream on her own terms, eventually starring in more than 30 national commercials, television and films.
Her attempts to seek legal help however, failed. The attorney laughed at Barbara’s allegations, suggesting that no one in their right mind would make up such a story.
In 2004, when rape victim Andrea Constand filed a lawsuit against Cosby, Barbara became one of 13 other Cosby victims called to take the witness stand on Andrea’s behalf. However, Cosby settled out of court, so the code of silence continued.
My goal as ambassador for PAVE is to help break the code of silence of fear and shame for victims of sexual crimes. I aim to support, educate and help victims of sexual violence find the courage to come forward and tell their story so that their perpetrator might come to justice.
In October 2014, Lycia Naff interviewed Barbara for Mail Online and her detailed account of her sexual assaults by Bill Cosby again made headlines, coaxing two new victims out of hiding, as well as a witness to one of the crimes.
Barbara, now 47, is a happily married mother of two and a successful artist currently living in Scottsdale, Arizona. She is dedicated to helping other victims of sexual violence find the courage to speak out and tell their story so that their perpetrator might come to justice.
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